Like a lot of us these days, NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin is working from home. And this week the arrangement didn’t work out so well for the reigning Daytona 500 champion.
With real-life racing suspended because of the coronavirus outbreak, many drivers have been participating in the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series. Entering last weekend, Hamlin had been successful in the new format, with one win and two other top 10 finishes in four races.
But Sunday on the virtual Talladega track, Hamlin finished dead last.
In fairness to Hamlin, it wasn’t his fault. His oldest daughter, Taylor, was the culprit.
In fairness to Taylor, she is only 7. And she just wanted to play on go-karts.
In video Hamlin posted on social media, Taylor can be seen approaching her father with her request. For some reason, she happens to be carrying the remote control to the monitor Dad was using to compete in this week’s virtual race.
Busy with the on-screen action, Hamlin has no response to his daughter. But then he suddenly cries out, “Hey, my screen just went black!”
Taylor turns, utters “Uh-oh” and scurries off.
Adorable — but maybe not so much to her dad, who ended up disconnected from his server and saw his race come to a premature conclusion.
“I’m mad. I’m pissed off,” Hamlin said in a video posted on Twitter. “But they’re just kids.”
I had so many questions about what just happened.. then we found 2nd hand footage at the end. I cannot believe it. pic.twitter.com/BfN1sNAsg8— Denny Hamlin (@dennyhamlin) April 26, 2020
It wasn’t Hamlin’s first virtual racing mishap involving his daughter. Last month, she brought her father a Coke while he was driving in the first iRacing event at a simulated Homestead-Miami Speedway track. The beverage ended up being a bit too fizzy.
But Hamlin recovered nicely that day and won the event. He wasn’t so lucky this week.
“My daughter came in with a remote and essentially ended our day. That’s something you just don’t hear every day, folks,” said Hamlin, trying his best to laugh it off. “Gotta be kidding me.”